Thanks everyone for your very scripturally thought-out replies. Daisy, you helped me see a facet of the scriptures I never noticed before. And V.Dakin’s reply really gave me pause for thought. And Burt, I think you may have something there… I’m gonna continue to mull all this counsel over. Thanks so much, dear faithful friends!
I respect your asking for opinions to consider that paragraph in the WT as my wife and I had a similar thought process as yourself. I also appreciate the input of @Daisy and @V.Dakin here, though I would respectfully suggest some additional thought process to both comments:
For Daisy, while it is true Jesus sandwiched the reference to the widow in between reminders about the disgraceful religious leaders, He did so in a manner of PRAISE, showing she was to be respected for her action. Her conscience led her to give, despite the organization of the day, and she was praised for it. We should each do as we feel will allow us to stand before Christ unashamed. (2 Cor. 5:10)
For V.Dakin, while the extremely general quoted usage of Exodus 23:15 COULD be applied (if someone chooses now to live under Law), the context of that quote, which must include the details given at Exodus 34:18-20 would lend to an understanding that the offerings one would carry in before Jehovah would prefigure the Christ; so now that He has given the ultimate sacrifice (offering) for us, and is now the High Priest we go before, it seems to me that using this reference would negate our current position, and that of Jesus. As Paul put it, our offerings are now to be the ‘bulls of our lips’ as it were. (Hosea 14:2; Heb. 13:15)
Due to some of the ways finances are used in what we consider an “unChristian” manner, my wife and I decided to regularly pray for Jesus to direct us to those who are in financial need for us to help as we can, and He has done so on multiple occasions. Of course this is only possible through holy spirit from Jehovah. This allows us to remain in good conscience when donating to those who we know need it, first to those who are sharers in our faith, but also to all others as we feel directed. This is also the reason we do not donate to most charitable organizations in the world.
Hope you find this helpful.
P.S. Sorry to any and all if my usage of tags or quotes are a wreck, first time and having trouble figuring out where to get help on it! 😉 Patience please! Thank you!